Soccer great tips FC Plat­inum $500 000 at stake in Chibuku Cup

Chronicle (Zimbabwe) - - Sport - Sikhum­buzo Moyo

FOR­GOT­TEN Zimbabwean football leg­end God­frey Paradza has tipped FC Plat­inum to go all the way to the fi­nal of the 2016 edi­tion of the $500 000 Chibuku Su­per Cup which roars into life at Ru­faro Sta­dium to­mor­row. Trou­bled sides, Harare City — who are the hold­ers — and Bor­der Strik­ers get the ball rolling to­mor­row af­ter­noon with the rest of the first round matches get­ting un­der­way over the week­end. FC Plat­inum take on Cha­pungu in a Mid­lands derby at Man­dava Sta­dium on Satur­day. Pa r a d z a , a prod­uct of the High­landers junior pol­icy but a Zim­babwe Saints and Dy­namos leg­end, be­lieves the Nor­man Mapeza-coached side have the pedi­gree to reach the fi­nal and even lift the tro­phy but did not rule out the coun­try’s tra­di­tional gi­ants High­landers, Dy­namos and Caps United.

“FC Plat­inum are play­ing good football, they have been con­sis­tent at the top and I feel if they carry their league form, no one will stop them. It’s a com­plete side re­ally. Caps United have also been do­ing well and I wouldn’t be sur­prised if they do well too but my money is on FC Plat­inum,” said Paradza who be­gan his football ca­reer un­der the le­gendary ju­niors coach Ali “Baba” Dube. He played along­side the likes of Net­sai Moyo, Oliver Ncube, the late Wil­lard Mashinkila-Khumalo in the fa­mous Liver­pool (Bosso Un­der-16) side.

He later played for Zim­babwe Saints’ se­nior side at the ten­der age of 17 where he was called into the Zim­babwe Un­der-20 af­ter only two games.

Paradza was to join Dy­namos, win­ning the league ti­tle with the Glam­our Boys in 1991. His se­nior na­tional team ca­reer be­gan at 18 when he un­der­stud­ied James Takavada.

“While my bet is on FC Plat­inum, rul­ing out Bosso and DeMbare will be sui­ci­dal, these are gi­ants of lo­cal football and their vast ex­pe­ri­ence can play a big part in this cup. Bosso are even psyched up by their dou­ble over DeMbare and would want to spice that up with this tro­phy which can be a dou­ble be­cause they are still in the run­ning for the league ti­tle,” said Paradza.

Win­ners of the cup will rep­re­sent Zim­babwe in the Caf Con­fed­er­a­tion Cup and Harare gi­ants Dy­namos have al­ready de­clared their in­ten­tion of mak­ing a re­turn to Africa. They take on How Mine on Sun­day in one of the tough­est first round en­coun­ters of the tour­na­ment.

Amahlolanyama play host to buoy­ant Mutare City whose coach Taku Shariwa has made a pub­lic procla­ma­tion that they are com­ing for a dou­ble, hav­ing beaten Bosso 2-1 in a league en­counter.

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